Ibuprofen is one of those catch-all drugs that's prescribed for everything from headaches to joint pains and arthritis. If you try to live a healthy lifestyle you probably take it for your sports injuries, and if you're over 40 it's essential for all the aches and pains of life.
But did you know there are some very serious risks associated with the drug?
America's Food and Drug Administration has warned that taking drugs like Aleve and Advil can increase your risk of heart attack and stroke. They can even cause stomach ulcers and increase your blood pressure!
If you depend on these drugs for pain relief, know that there are safer, healthier alternatives.
For starters, there are alternatives like acetaminophen (Tylenol) that are less harsh on your body. They also don't work as well, but better safe than sorry! If you can't go cold turkey on your daily ibuprofen, doctors suggest trying a "acetaminophen vacation," where you take the less harmful drug for a few days at a time.
But be careful: even abusing these drugs has its risk, because overusing acetaminophen can really damage your liver.
Or, if you're willing to try a natural solution, consider switching to turmeric.
Turmeric is a spice made from the plant of the same name. It's been used in natural medicine for centuries, but you'll probably recognize it as the spice that gives curry its unique flavor.
This spice's main ingredient, curcumin, blocks the enzymes that cause inflammation, helping to relieve your pain. It's not addictive, and there are lots of convenient ways you can take it.
Some people rub it directly into their skin, but you can also replace salt in your cooking with it, or take a daily supplement that contains tumeric.
Decide for yourself what approach is best for you, but it's important to know the risks attached to your medicine!